The joy of Africa is its utter diversity in each country; Striking landscapes, natural wonders, and untouched wilderness jostle for attention with azure blue seas, awe-inspiring mountain ranges, deserts, and rain forests. While travel is slowly starting to return, let’s tickle your mind with places to book for later in 2021 and beyond.

The Namib Desert, Namibia

Stark landscapes including burnt red sand, petrified trees, shy desert animals, and billowing dunes are some of the stars of the show in the Desert. The advantage is of course that people are few and far between – in terms of isolating and keeping a low profile, Namibia is an excellent trip idea. There are exquisite lodges set in the middle of the Desert, options to get there are by 4×4 and charter planes. Explore the dunes by quad bike, let a seasoned ranger show you the fauna and flora that’s adapted to the desert climate and breath in the quiet solitude this peaceful country offers.

 Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

One of the most recognized mountains, Mount Kilimanjaro is a sight to behold. Adventurers & novice + pro mountain climbers ascend it’s snowy peaks all year round. The more sedate traveler can admire this exquisite site from afar, from the luxury of the Tanzanian terra firma while watching zebra and wildebeest graze in the grasslands framing the famous peak.

Boulders Beach, South Africa

In the False Bay Peninsula, lies Boulders Beach, a penguin’s haven. Quite literally surrounded by large boulders, this beach is sheltered from the Cape Winds and offers a safe haven for the once-endangered Jackass Penguins. The sea is turquoise merging into a darker green where kelp forests meet the Indian Ocean. The area can be scouted by wooden walkways where penguins nest underfoot. Enjoy the dense fynbos and indigenous trees around the beaches and explore the charming Simonstown, an old Navy harbor, where quaint shops and restaurants are waiting to give you a warm South African welcome.

Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar

Separated from continental Africa by 250 miles of water, Madagascar is the greatest, unexplored adventure to add to your list. The island nation’s secrets include giant chameleons, shy and endangered lemurs, and places like the surreal Avenue of the Baobabs, where the centuries-old trees reach heights of nearly 100 feet. Madagascar is untouched and not commercial at all. Its luminous coral reefs literally crackle with life as tropical fish flit amongst shells, crabs, clams, and more. It’s tricky to get to, but once there, hop on a tuk-tuk and enjoy island life.

Okavango Delta, Botswana

The lush Okavango Delta—a 49-million acre river delta in northern Botswana—is like a real-world paradise where leopards, zebras, buffalo, and rhinos roam freely. Hippos create ‘hippo highways’ along the waterways and form a pinnacle part of the Delta’s ecosystem. Visit during Africa’s winter, after the rains when the delta floods. The savanna’s grasses are low, while growth along the waterways attracts tons of wildlife. Explore a multitude of beautiful lodges along the waterways and spot the rich birdlife that abounds.